Sea Eagles survive Souths' surge

The Manly Sea Eagles have run out eventual 30-22 victors over the South Sydney Rabbitohs in front of 15459 fans at ANZ Stadium this afternoon.

The Sea Eagles raced out to a comfortable 18-6 lead at the halftime break, and held on in the second half as the Rabbitohs closed to within eight points with eight minutes left on the clock.

It was a willing contest between two sides that have shared some willing contests over the years and it didn't take long for the Eagles to open their account when winger Michael Robertson crossed out wide in just the fifth minute. Fullback Ben Farrar then produced some individual brilliance when he extended the lead to 10 after grubber-kicking for himself. The Rabbitohs got on the board through second rower Dave Taylor, but it was to be their only points of the first half. A further Manly try to Matt Cross and a penalty goal by Jamie Lyon on the stroke of halftime gave Manly their 18-6 lead at the break.

The Eagles extended their lead out to 30-6 by the 51st minute after Lyon added his name to the tryscoring list just after halftime. When second rower Anthony Watmough also crossed, many thought it would be a case of Manly by plenty. But as has been an alarming trend for coach Des Hasler, the Sea Eagles faded out towards the back end of the game and three tries in quick succession - two to Beau Champion and one to Isaac Luke closed the gap to eight points with eight minutes left. Fortunately for the Manly side, they held on to register another victory, but coach Des Hasler would be far from impressed with their final 30 minutes of the match.

Next week, the Rabbitohs have the bye courtesy of the representative season kicking off, while Manly will have players taking on the Dragons on Saturday night, less than 48 hours after the test match.

Match Details
South Sydney Rabbitohs 22 were defeated by Manly Sea Eagles 30
National Rugby League - NRL - Round 8 - Sunday May 2, 2010 3:00pm
Venue: ANZ Stadium
Referee: Tony Archer and Alan Shortall
Video Referee: Steve Clark
Touch Judges: Russell Turner and Steve Carrall
Crowd: 15459
Halftime: South Sydney Rabbitohs 6 Manly Sea Eagles 18

Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:
3 Points - Jamie Lyon (1 Try, 4 Conversions, 1 Penalty Goal)
2 Points - Josh Perry
1 Point - Issac Luke (1 Try, 3 Conversions)

SOUTH SYDNEY RABBITOHS (22)
Tries: Beau Champion (2), Dave Taylor, Issac Luke
Conversions: Issac Luke (3/4)

MANLY SEA EAGLES (30)
Tries: Anthony Watmough, Michael Robertson, Jamie Lyon, Matt Cross, Ben Farrar
Conversions: Jamie Lyon (4/5)
Penalty Goals: Jamie Lyon (1/1)

LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary 1 min: And we're underway here at the Olympic Stadium. Manly will have first use of the ball.
3 min: A great kick from Kieran Foran culminates in a goal-line dropout after Rhys Wesser was forced to tap the ball over the dead-ball line.
5 min: TRY
TRY Manly Sea Eagles
Scored by Michael Robertson. Conversion attempt by Jamie Lyon unsuccessful.
A great start to the Manly side with Robertson crossing out wide after some great lead-up work. Simple catching and passing saw Robertson with nothing but fresh air in front of him.
Manly Sea Eagles 4-0
6 min: Penalty to Manly after Souths were caught offside. Manly will go on the attack once again.
8 min: The opening stages have been all Manly, but Souths now have the ball and are making some good metres up the field. The pro-South Sydney crowd are yelling for a penalty which is not forthcoming as yet. Sandow finds touch 10 metres out from the Manly line.
11 min: Penalty Manly. South Sydney penalised for a "bit of neckwork".
12 min: Video Referee judging on a possible Manly try to Robertson. Checking on-side and grounding.
13 min: No Try to the Manly side after Robertson is ruled to have touched the cornerpost while attempting to force the ball in the corner.
13 min: Penalty South Sydney. The crowd rise as one as the Rabbitohs receive their first penalty of the game.
16 min: Manly drop the ball on the first tackle after receiving a penalty. South Sydney now with the ball.
17 min: Both teams trading errors over the course of the last few minutes. South Sydney now give the ball back to Manly after a forward pass.
21 min: TRY
TRY Manly Sea Eagles
Scored by Ben Farrar. Conversion attempt by Jamie Lyon successful.

Ben Farrar scores Manly's second try with a piece of individual brilliance. The fullback stab-kicked in behind the defence and got a perfect bounce before forcing the ball, extending Manly's lead.
Manly Sea Eagles 10-0
22 min: Six to go for the Manly side after Wesser knocks the ball on after a high Hodkinson bomb.
22 min: Fortunately for the Rabbitohs, Kite knocks on after taking his eyes briefly off the ball.
25 min: Hodkinson picks up some good metres with a great kick, making a near-perfect set for Manly as both teams slowly walk to the scrum as the warm weather begins to take its toll on the players.
26 min: Penalty South Sydney. Kite penalised for having hands on the ball as he attempted to slow the play the ball.
27 min: Goal-line dropout to Manly after South Sydney march the ball downfield and force Robertson back into the in-goal.
28 min: TRY
TRY South Sydney Rabbitohs
Scored by Dave Taylor. Conversion attempt by Issac Luke successful.

Big Dave Taylor runs over the top of a poor Jamie Lyon attempted tackle, scoring the Rabbitohs first try of the afternoon and they definitely needed to be the next team to score.
Manly Sea Eagles 10-6
30 min: Another penalty to South Sydney. The momentum appears to be changing as Souths again go on the attack.
31 min: Manly penalised for being offside. Manly will need to hang on here.
32 min: Manly breathe a huge sigh of relief as Burgess charges onto a pass that is ruled forward.
34 min: TRY
TRY Manly Sea Eagles
Scored by Matt Cross. Conversion attempt by Jamie Lyon successful.

Manly renew their 10-point lead with a try to Matt Cross who dived over under the crossbar despite juggling the ball several times.
Manly Sea Eagles 16-6
35 min: Foran's kick on the fifth tackle rolls over the deadball line, but it will enable them to get their defence back to a set-start in the shadows of halftime.
36 min: Sutton hoists the ball high and despite Williams taking the ball cleanly, is rolled back into the in-goal. A try here for South Sydney would be just what they require.
37 min: Video referee judging a possible South Sydney try to Isaac Luke who is claiming to have dived over from dummy half.
38 min: Penalty awarded to Manly after Luke is ruled to have made a second effort.
38 min: Lowe penalised for unnecessary use of the knees. Lyon will line up a shot at penalty goal 35 metres out, almost in front.
40 min: PENALTY GOAL
PENALTY GOAL Manly Sea Eagles
Penalty goal attempt by Jamie Lyon successful.

Lyon successfully pots the penalty goal, extending Manly's lead out to 12 at the halftime interval.
Manly Sea Eagles 18-6
40 min: And the second half is underway with the Rabbitohs working the ball away from their own line.
42 min: Video referee checking on a possible Manly try to Jamie Lyon. Possibly held up, but he looks confident.
43 min: TRY
TRY Manly Sea Eagles
Scored by Jamie Lyon. Conversion attempt by Jamie Lyon successful.
Lyon scores Manly's fourth try of the afternoon, taking advantage of some great leadup work from Matai and Williams after Hodkinson hoisted a high bomb that was originally knocked back by Williams.Matai delivered the pass to Lyon who, with the help of Matt Ballin, somehow forced the ball under a weight of several South Sydney defenders.
Manly Sea Eagles 24-6
50 min: Manly again on the attack after South Sydney had a goal-line dropout.
51 min: TRY
TRY Manly Sea Eagles
Scored by Anthony Watmough. Conversion attempt by Jamie Lyon successful.

Watmough crosses over under the posts, extending Manly's lead out to a near match-winning lead.
Manly Sea Eagles 30-6
56 min: Manly appear to have this game well in hand as they continue to get through their sets. South Sydney really need to score in their next set or two to be any chance of a comeback.
58 min: South Sydney now have the ball in Manly's half. They need to score here.
59 min: TRY
TRY South Sydney Rabbitohs
Scored by Issac Luke. Conversion attempt by Issac Luke successful.

Luke gives the Rabbitohs a sniff of an unlikely victory after taking advantage of a Manly error. Where there is life, there is hope for Rabbitoh fans.
Manly Sea Eagles 30-12
62 min: Sutton breaks away down the sideline! Manly defenders come across and bundle him into touch. South Sydney may have been unlucky not to have been awarded a penalty in the previous tackle, but Manly will now have the ball and look to put the result beyond doubt.
64 min: South Sydney 40 metres out from the Manly line with a full set of six. They need to score again to set up a thrilling finale.
65 min: A shocking pass from Sandow is toed forward by Watmough who dives on the loose ball to relieve the pressure on his side.
67 min: TRY
TRY South Sydney Rabbitohs
Scored by Beau Champion. Conversion attempt by Issac Luke unsuccessful.

Farrar knocks a towering bomb on under immense pressure, and Champion dives over in the corner. The wheels on Manly are starting to wobble.
Manly Sea Eagles 30-16
70 min: South Sydney fans screaming for an offside penalty, and they finally get one awarded by Archer. There is still time left for the Rabbitohs if they're good enough.
71 min: TRY
TRY South Sydney Rabbitohs
Scored by Beau Champion. Conversion attempt by Issac Luke successful.

Champion scores again! John Sutton delivered a perfect pass to Champion who hit a gaping hole in the Manly defence untouched. The Sea Eagles can hear the footsteps now.
Manly Sea Eagles 30-22
74 min: The Rabbitohs are now starting to run out of time and need to score again if they are to grab an unlikely victory. Taylor drops an inside ball and Manly will look to finish their set and then run the clock down. They should win from here.
75 min: Tony Williams knocks the ball on to give the Rabbitohs another chance of a remarkable victory. They must score in this set.
80 min: Hodkinson drills the ball into touch, signalling the end of a willing contest between these two sides. Manly register another victory and will no doubt be giving coach Des Hasler nightmares with their second half fadeouts.

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